Tuesday, January 05, 2010
#8 Freshwater Sharks
The fall of 2006 will never be forgotten and most likely never be duplicated. It was one of those seasons of Story book prowess. The rains came early and the river got big quickly and stayed that way for the entire season. It seemed that every week we got a decent rain shower that keep the river running just above her banks and into the grass. If I recall properly we were fishing her at 1.4 on the graph with crystal conditions quite regularly. This along with a bumper fall return had literally tonnes of fish throughout the system. One outing in particular we brought Norland’s father-in-law with us. Gerry is a stand up guy but he is more of a boat fisherman than Steelheader. Once a season or so Gene would play guide and bring him up on a day that he felt he could get Gerry into a fish or two. Gene had asked if I minded if Gerry accompany us for the day. I had no problem with it as long as it put us on the river. This Friday was the first big water day of the season and the timing was playing out perfect. If my memory serves me correct we started lower in the river at a common run. It was a weekday morning and we were shocked at just how many people started to show up to the river after we arrived. After a couple of quick fish we decided to hike up river and loose the congregation. The river was literally running perfect and what we were about to encounter none of us would have imagined. There we were on a river with perfect conditions in the middle of a huge push of fresh chromers straight from the lake. I can't recall just how many fish we hit that day but it was bordering on ridiculous and to the full extent of the word. We eventually found ourselves just below the fabled Wintering Hole hitting lightening hot chromer after chromer. This is where #8 came to hand. My number 8 most memorable fish is this river shark that came from a deep trench on the far side of the rapids. With the high water it was a new holding area for us. This trench was literally packed with fish and this particular one gave me and the 15’ Frontier a run for our money. Eventually fate intervened and I managed to swing her into the grass. I remember Gerry was virtually speechless when I handed him the camera and lifted a giant pristine chrome hen from the moderately stained water. I think he did a great job of capturing the moment and I thank him for that. We caught a lot of fish that day and this one will always stay with me. I cannot fathom just how big that push of fish was but we managed to stay on top of them and experienced a day we will never forget. Yet another testament to a tremendous system.